Monday, October 31, 2005

Semi-Mature Adults in Costume

My best-girl-friend, AA came up to visit this weekend. So, like last year, we attended the "Halloween on the Farm" haunted house. It was fun, even though we were in a large group and felt a little "rushed" through. It didn't seem quite as scary, either. Am I becoming jaded to scary stuff?

So, no, he didn't really wear this costume out in public, but I had to get a picture of him wearing it. And, yes, that is a Hershey's Kiss.
The Kiss is AA's costume, but I don't know if she would want her picture up here. So you're gonna have to settle for laughing at R. She's really cute and petite, so the Kiss is perfect for her!
She had more comments and compliments than R & I combined!

So here are our real costumes. Real original, right. Yeah, well last year it was very, very hot, so I tried the "Greek Goddess" (i.e. toga) thing. Yeah, that didn't work out very well. My safety pins kept popping off and by the end of the night I was practically naked. Not really, but I felt that way, and everyone was laughing at me!
I knew the only way I would get R to dress up (as anything besides "Hunting Guy") was if I gave him a cool toy to play with, hence the Bone-Mace. Anyways, I couldn't find a sickle (he's supposed to be the Grim Reaper), and the Mace was pretty cool. (Now, if only I could get him to stop chasing the cats with it!)
After the "Haunted Farm" we went to our first "Adults Only" Halloween Party. Note: The only reason it was "Adults Only" is because the hosts don't have children and probably didn't want to be "baby-sitting" all night. Costumes were "encouraged" and I had the best time people watching and trying to figure out some of the very original ideas. Ex-FEMA director, Mike Brown was there, complete with horse-judging credentials and folder of "red tape." We were also joined by one very big "ADHD child," complete with restraining harness (i.e. Kid Leash), chocolate face, and Exhausted Mom. I was also surprised to see an "older" couple wearing this costume! Yeah, really!
This party was hosted by professors from the University, and I found out that they have been hosting it for 18, yes eighteen, years! Assuming I will be invited again next year, I need to come up with a Better Costume. Any suggestions?

Friday, October 28, 2005

I've got MAD carving SKILLS!

So, I bought a better pumpkin and "Look What I Can Do!" (Do y'all ever watch MadTV?) Yeah, I kinda used a pattern--for the layout, design, and size. But, at least I didn't have to use the Dremel!
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Thursday, October 27, 2005

New Camera, Adorable Husband

I know, he's adorable! I bought him wax lips (one of his childhood favorites) and he bought me the Digital Camera I've been wanting!

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Our nephew, Elijah James

Born October 16, 2005. At 7:17 pm, Garden Park Hospital,
Gulfport, MS. 7 lbs 3 oz, 19.5 inches.
(Momma, is that all the right information?)

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Gulf Coast Slideshow

I just received this in an email and if any of y'all are interested, check out the Gulf Coast slideshow. There is music, too, so you may want to turn the volume down. I know it's been almost a week since my last post, but I have been all over the place. I'll tell y'all all about my new little nephew, and my visits to the coast....later.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

50th Post!

So, this is number 50...Wow! And, I haven't posted since I really feel the pressure to make this one interesting. But, nothing is really going on right now...Let's see...
1. Well, we will be going back down to Gulfport this weekend for the delivery of Little Elija James--my nephew (in-law)! Yep, my SIL will have induced labor on Sunday! I can hardly believe it! She's so young and still in school (maybe I just feel that way b/c I still feel so young & Not Ready for Kids)! Hey, I'm happy with this plan, b/c we know when he's coming and can Be There for her (as opposed to waiting for the call, then having to drive down on the spur of the moment)! A new baby, isn't that always So Exciting!?!
2. Next weekend I'll be going to Gulfport to a. Get away from Starkville and b. Visit with my Girl Friends! I had so much fun in the limited time we had a few weekends ago that I've already planned another trip down! It's SM's birthday, so we'll probably take her out to dinner...then Who Knows!! I think we'll also get to go "sightseeing" (aka RubberNecking). I know it's terrible, but I just have to see for myself, you know!
3. The weekend after that, my best-girl-friend will be coming up to visit ME! That will be Halloween, so we plan to dress up, go to a few parties, and get scared at Haunted Houses!! We did that last year and it was So Much Fun!
4. I've gotten A LOT of work done in the lab! Ever since school started I've had a hard time making a schedule to be in the lab. Well, last weekend and earlier this week I spend several hours Getting Things Done! And, it feels Good!
I had more, but now I'm distracted with trying to figure out how to download my camera phone pics to my computer (a temporary solve for my lack of digital camera). Arrrggghhh! I think I have to download a bunch of software or something...
Well, *cheers* to my 50th post!

Monday, October 10, 2005

Google Images

I got this idea from Osbasso...and someone else (can't remember who)...I know, it's kind of random...but the images I found were interesting anyways...

Go to Google and click on the images link. Type in the following and post the first (or your favorite) picture the search engine finds.
1. The name of the town where you grew up
2. The name of the town where you live now
3. Your name
4. Your Grandmother’s name
5. Your favorite food
6. Your favorite drink
7. Your favorite sound
8. Your favorite song
9. Your favorite smell

1. The place I grew up, Gulfport, MS (4 + 4 years...the most time I lived in one place). It doesn't look like that anymore. *tear*

2. I've lived in Starkville, MS for 6.5 years...and I love to watch the Bulldogs play! (That's me, sitting at the far, far right, in the back row of the endzone bleachers.)

3. The beautiful Ms Celina Jaitley. She was Miss India 2001.

4. My grandma, Frances, is not a hurricane...well, I guess she can act like one sometimes.

5. No words to describe my love of...

6. The rest of the country doesn't know what they're missing out on! And, for those of you who don't understand the difference between sweet tea, and sweetened tea...We BREW the tea and put our sugar in when it's Hot (that way it all dissolves). Adding sugar or sweeteners to iced tea is NOT the same.

7. Dave Koz, Kenny G, my husband, ah...the mellow, soulful voice of a saxophone.

8. *Can you guess this one (favorite song)? Every time I hear this one, I'm flooded with uncle learning to play it on guitar, R trying to play it on guitar, and SD bringing tears to my eyes and a tug in my heart...

9. Favorite Smell. Cold air, evergreens, and fresh snow (don't really have any of these in MS).

*In case you didn't get it, that was Stairway to Heaven, by Led Zepplin.

Saturday, October 08, 2005

Finally, Pictures of the Shed

Okay, I had a few requests from my mom & MIL to see what the New Shed looks like, so if you're not interested...just ignore this post.

Here is my trailer (I know, it looks trashy, but IT'S MINE). This is the start of framing for the floor joists. Our yard is very uneven, so this took a whole afternoon of digging, leveling, and backfilling. Also, we have a lot of clay in our soil, so the foundation is just sitting on top of concrete piers.

Here, the floor is finished, and the walls are being framed and paneled. The height of the trailer's roof is about 12 feet, so you can see how high the ceiling is inside the shed.

Here is the current "stage of development." The deckboards haven't been put down, and we need to put up a little more paint. The shed's inside floor dimensions are 10ft x 12ft. And the deck is 6ft x 6ft (by the steps) and 6ft x 10ft (by the driveway). That makes a polygon with dimensions (starting at the corner of shed/deck): 10ft x 6ft x 4ft x 6ft x 6ft x 12 ft. There is also a 2ft wide "alley" between the shed and the house (for storing waterhose, lawnmower, etc).

Here is another picture, from the front. We will (eventually) paint the "ceiling" of the deck. And, once we have some money to spend, we will put on the deck boards. From this angle, you can see the "alley." That's also where the water and drain pipes (for washer) and vent (for dryer) are installed. You can see our old shed in the back...yes, it's that small...and yes, we still have it up. R is keeping his 4-wheeler, dirt bikes, and gas cans in there.

Friday, October 07, 2005

Jack 'o Lanterns and Scary Costumes

A few days ago, we bought "pie pumpkins" for $1 each, with the intention of carving them. Little did I know that "pie pumpkins" are younger and therefore much, much, much harder to cut! I had the little saws made just for jack 'o lanterns, but Man, I couldn't even cut with a big steak knife! After some debate and brainstorming, I decided to try something new (don't take my idea, I'm gonna patent it) use the Dremel.
And, it actually worked! Yeah, and the house smelled like baking pumpkin pies (then burning pumpkin pies)! R didn't want to "go through the trouble" of trying to figure out how to carve a face--so he drew it on (come on! how lame is that?!)! Well, I stuck with it & ended up with a really cool cat (back arched & eyes glowing)!

I Really need to get a digital camera.

Then, yesterday we bought the cutest pet costumes for the cats! (They were super-cheap at Hudsons). They are little "hats" that velcro under the cat's neck and their ears poke through. They also come with color-coordinated "anklets" (little elastic-cloth bands for all 4 legs).
Reina is a witch--green face, big nose, little hat, and pink yarn hair. Nabi is a she-devil--red face, big oogly eyes, and a long forked tail. Of course, the cats hated wearing them, but it was tons of fun for us! Ha! They don't look like these, but aren't these Adorable!

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Looking to the Future

So, I've been listening to a lot of my old CDs and reminiscing...but I've had enough posts about the this one is Looking To The Future.
The next 1+ year of my life is already set--I need to finish school. I will graduate in December 2006, then what? I have already started talking to a the HR departments at a few companies I'm interested in (had planned to apply for a job when I finished my B.S.), and they know some very general information about me. So, when should I seriously send in applications? September, October (next year)? That gives me a few months to wait for a reply while I'm finishing up classes and paperwork (i.e. dissertation). Oh, God, how wonderful it would be to have a job--starting January 2007!! Hopefully they will have at least enough interest to set up interviews or something?
Now I want to play the "Let's Guess The Future" game...
November 1, 2006, I receive a call/email/letter from my Dream Job in Montana. They want to know if I can interview before Christmas.
Yes! Richard & I plan our vacation/anniversary trip to Montana (2 weeks sounds good).
The interview goes great, and by the time we leave, they've offered me a Job, starting mid-January 2007.
We return to Mississippi long enough for me to pack up a few more clothes and some other items, then I head back to Montana.
I find a nice and inexpensive apartment "just outside" of town. I find a nice church, meet with a few real estate agents, and make myself at home.
A month or two later, I am settled in my job, apartment, and town. Richard QUITS his job and starts packing our stuff (we have a lot of stuff).
Our stuff has arrived at the apartment and Richard is ready to leave Mississippi. He puts a "For Sale" sign on the house and gets a terrific offer a few days later.
A week later, he arrives in Montana with the cats and a wad of cash!

Of course, there are SO MANY things that we just cannot plan for: Weather (I've never been in a severe winter and Richard has never been in any kind of winter), Job (I just have to apply at the right place at the right time), Family (we're still trying to talk my MIL into moving with us *wink, wink, momma* and my family is still convinced we should go to New Mexico), House (we plan to buy or build eventually, but first we'll have to rent for a while, and HOPE we can get a decent offer for the trailer)...Sometimes I really wish I had a Crystal Ball that would let me see just a little bit of The Future! (Do any of y'all know a good psychic?)

Monday, October 03, 2005

Good Times With Girl Friends

Usually when I make a trip down to Gulfport, I try to get together with my best-girl-friend, AA. Most of the time we'll meet up for dinner, a movie, or chat-time at her house. Sometimes her boyfriend, or other "random" friends will join us, but usually it's just me & her. Well, this time we were joined by 3 "other" girls. And, I must say, it was So Much Fun! The other girls were:
1. JH, out of the group, she & I were probably the closest in high school, but we have only talked a few times since graduating. She married her "high-school sweetheart," too. They started dating when we were sophomores (he was a senior). Now, she has two Beautiful Sons, and is teaching 1st (I think) grade. She's a very sweet person, was always the more mature, "motherly" one in our "group."
2. MV. (Still a close friend of JH.) All I knew about her in high school was that she was smart and quiet. She was also in band (as were most of the people I knew), and is now teaching (2nd grade?). For the past year she was teaching English to kindergarteners in Taiwan, and before that she was teaching in London. Next year she will be in Germany. Wow! She is still somewhat quiet (reserved), but once we "got her talking" she added a very "sweet" touch to our Girl-Time.
3. SM. (Still a close friend of AA.) Another "band person" who I didn't really know in high school. From what I can recall, she was kind of quiet, too. Now, she's very loud & outgoing--she's having a "rough time" with her boyfriend & spent some time on the phone yelling at/with him. She brought the aggressive/comic relief to Girl-Time.

All together, it was a good time. I went to JH's house & "met" MV (hadn't seen or heard about since high school), and we drove together. AA & SM met us at Chilis (5:00). We had good food and great conversation. We weren't planning to do anything else afterwards, but we "clicked" so well that we decided to go to AA's house and hang out (6:30). AA's boyfriend was there waiting for her, but accepted "all of us" very graciously (she'd been out of town for a few weeks, so we were kind of intruding on Their Time). He even made us rootbeer floats! We ended up talking about everything from 7th grade "hate letters" (they've all known each other that long--I didn't get there until 9th grade), to 9th grade homecoming, to our first Band Camp in 10th grade, to marriage, kids, jobs, and future plans. We even talked about the ONE GUY we ALL had a CRUSH on...SD...yeah, I've talked about him before (told ya he was AWESOME). We finally headed home around 10:00.
What a "breath of fresh air." You know, catching up with people who were all at the same place (high school), and are now doing such Different and Interesting Things. Instead of feeling so down about Gulfport...and all that...I feel refreshed.
And, on top of all that, my SIL will be having the baby (my nephew) Any Time Now! That will be another trip down! *cross fingers* Hope it's SOON!!

Saturday, October 01, 2005

A Post from Gulfport

Okay, so here I sit at my MIL's house, in Gulfport, MS. This is the first time I've been down here STS (Since The Storm) and I'm....sad...yeah, that's the word. I haven't seen very much of the hard-hit areas, but the whole city looks very different! Actually, I could tell the difference starting as far north as Meridian (see Map). All along the interstate trees are down and leaning, buildings are missing roofs, and dents in the guardrails show how many trees were blocking the roads. I finally got used to seeing the damage, then I got to Hattiesburg. Most of their "Exit Description" signs (the signs that say what gas/food/lodging is at that exit) were bent--the posts bent so the signs are bent backwards and upside-down (if you're not familiar with the area, how would you ever know which exit to take?)! Then I got to Gulfport. I do not have the words to describe this place, and how it makes me feel. The biggest things that I have seen are: So many buildings with massive damage. Entire shopping centers are gone, homes still have trees piled on their roofs (rooves? lol), and many businesses are still closed. Second, are the boats piled up on the banks of small "back bay" waterways. Yes, hundreds of sailboats, fishing boats, shrimp boats, speed boats, and pontoons are literally, Piled Up along the banks. And, finally, I am amazed by the amount of TRASH. It's Everywhere! Piled in parking lots, front yards, and along the roads. Half of the vehicles on the road are trucks pulling "homemade" trailers Full Of Trash (real trash, limbs, and building materials)! Where will it all go? Will they recycle some of it? The wood can be chopped and used for firewood (obviously further north, not here) and the building materials can be reused. I know this is short and kind of superficial, but I really cannot describe what I see and how I feel. Just know, it is bad.
Last night we went to dinner at Logan's Roadhouse. We put our name on "the list" and waited out on the front lawn (with about 75 other people)--for One Hour and Fifteen Minutes (we got there at 7:30). We went inside, ordered drinks and our food. Our waitress asked us how long we had to wait and quickly brought our drinks and rolls (she was Wonderful). Thirty Minutes later our food still hadn't arrived. A young man (A Manager) came to our table and told us that he was "Very sorry for the wait. And, according to the receipt, I have paid for everything except five sweet teas." Five minutes later, our food was served--and it was pretty good. And, yes, the meal was Free. Wow! Definitely Worth The Wait. I had never eaten at Logan's before, but I know that I will eat there Again! Thank God for the Kindness of Others! Even though it was just a "little" thing, it really made my day (my week, even).